It’s been a year since a group of rogue army members tried to overthrow the Turkish government – and failed.
July 15th has been declared a national holiday, dubbed ‘Democracy and National Unity Day.’
CGTN’s Michal Bardavid explains how the country marked the day.
It was one year ago when a Turkish citizen risked his life to lay down in defiance in front of a military tank to prevent a military coup in Turkey. More than 240 people died in violent clashes.
A year later, thousands marched to the ‘July 15 Martyrs Bridge’ on the Bosphorus in Istanbul with Turkish flags raised high.
Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan walked alongside families of those who died in the failed coup and unveiled a memorial that was built for the victims before giving a speech. Ceremonies to mark the day took place all across the country and a special session commemorating the victims was held at the Parliament.
— Turkish Presidency (@trpresidency) July 15, 2017
The Turkish government announced Fethullah Gulen – a Muslim cleric in self-exile in the U.S., was behind the coup soon after it took place. Gulen denies the charges and Washington has so far declined to extradite him.
— Middle East Monitor (@MiddleEastMnt) July 15, 2017
A state of emergency was declared after the coup attempt and has been in place ever since. While the main opposition party has called for an end to it –President Erdogan has recently stated that it will only end once the government completes its crackdown against coup suspects.